3 ways transitioning can harm seniors
In most continuing care retirement communities, there’s an expectation that as residents’ health and function deteriorate, they will “transition” — or move to a higher level of care such as assisted living, skilled nursing or memory care.
Transitioning, one of the trends in modern senior living, can benefit seniors in a number of ways:
● In assisted living, staff members are available to help with bathing, dressing, administering medications and other vital activities of daily living.
● In skilled nursing, a stateregulated staff of certified nursing assistants, registered nurses and other medical professionals attends to a variety of complex care needs.
However, transitioning also can have harmful effects for seniors who don’t receive proper support.
Separation from familiar surroundings
Simply being in a different physical environment can prove traumatic and confusing for some seniors. Loved ones and staff can help ease the transition by bringing along valued personal items, like photos, military mementos, treasured keepsakes and even a favorite piece of furniture.
A study published earlier this year by the Gerontological Society of America found that residents living in communities where transitioning is required due to deteriorating health — such as in continuingcare retirement communities — experience feelings of being stigmatized. As a result, many hide their health problems and increasing needs.
Fostering a culture that encourages more independent residents to visit all levels of care frequently can help. Many communities are creating multilevel environments by placing unique dining destinations, spas and other amenities near their assisted living and skilled nursing residences.
Newly transitioned seniors often feel lonely and isolated from friends and loved ones. Using a technology solution like IndependaTVeTM helps seniors stay connected through easy video chatting and the ability to virtually “attend” events like graduations, weddings and sporting events.
A senior who has moved to a new environment never needs to feel alone, since with IndependaTVe™, loved ones can check in and connect at any time.
Easing the transition for your residents
Transitioning is certainly among the prevalent trends in modern senior living, but it’s not easy. By implementing amenities that encourage residents from all levels of care to mingle and by using technologies like IndependaTVe™ to stave off feelings of isolation, you can make periods of transition easier for residents, their loved ones and your staff.